Ventura Theater

Live Review: Gojira & Pallbearer at Ventura Theater

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When a band goes on tour these days, it’s always best to take other bands out with you that can keep the attention of the audience. That’s exactly the case with the latest tour that Gojira is on. In between their off dates from the Metallica tour, Gojira with special guests Pallbearer, are taking every venue by storm and leaving it in shambles. When you have two powerhouse bands playing on the same bill, you know you are going to get something special.

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As Pallbearer took the stage, the crowd began to fill into the venue. From the first note of their set, you could sense that you were about to hear and see something substantial. Touring in support of their latest epic opus Heartless, Pallbearer took no prisoners as they pummeled the audience with a sonic assault of 70’s inspired rock and doom metal. But it’s not your run of the mill doom, instead, Pallbearer instills a sense of melody that drives the songs to epic proportions. Though their set was only 4 songs, Pallbearer managed to leave the crowd wanting more but also absolutely warmed up for what Gojira was about to bring. On a side note, I’ve been wanting to see Pallbearer live for some time, and they didn’t disappoint. In fact, I really enjoyed their set and hope they do a headlining tour soon with a Los Angeles stop so I can really see more of what they have to offer.

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Now for the main event of the evening, Gojira. This was my fourth time seeing them live and each time I see them, they get better and better. I honestly don’t know if there is a band out there that is as tight as they are. As a band with 6 albums into their career, it gets a bit difficult and interesting when putting together the set list but, Gojira really knows how to pick songs that will drive audiences wild. Songs like “Only Pain,” “The Heaviest Matter Of The Universe,” “Silvera,” Stranded,” “Flying Whales,” L’Enfant Sauvage,” “Oroborus,” “Vacuity,” “Toxic Garbage Island,” are absolutely stellar live. In fact, I’d dare say that Gojira are better live than on their albums. They have also really developed a show with lights, fog, and jams, the latter of which makes the songs feel like different beasts entirely. At the end of their set for the evening, they even graced the crowd with a rousing rendition of “Territory” by Sepultura. A song that they have now made their own after that performance.

What a great night for heavy music and live music in general. Seeing these two bands not only left me inspired to want to go play but, also to want to go see more shows. Bands of this caliber make nights like this all worth while. Gojira are on their way to becoming a band for the ages and Pallbearer are on the verge of taking the rock world by storm. Do yourself a favor, go to your favorite record store and pick up albums by both Gojira and Pallbearer, play them really loud at home, in your car, or wherever. You will be glad you did, and those around you will be too.

Pallbearer Set List:

1) Thorns
2) Devoid Of Redemption
3) Dancing In Madness
4) Worlds Apart

Gojira Set List:

01) Only Pain
02) The Heaviest Matter Of The Universe
03) Silvera
04) Stranded
05) Flying Whales
06) The Cell
07) Backbone
08) Terra Inc
09) L’Enfant Sauvage
10) Drum Solo
11) The Shooting Star
12) Toxic Garbage Island
13) Band Jam (with Joe and Mario switching instruments)
14) Oroborus

Encore:

15) Vacuity
16) Territory (Sepultura Cover)

 

Review By: Brian Lacy

Photos By: Alisa Lacy

Live Review: Failure At The Ventura Theater

11150382_10153336132807904_3639161145926426919_nSince announcing their return in 2014 I’ve had the pleasure of seeing Failure a bunch of times. Each time I’ve seen them my level of excitement grows, and I’m continuously left in awe and with the feeling of inspiration. May 1st at the Ventura Theater left me with that feeling and then some. The bands 90 minutes set was roaring, filled with all the songs that I love, and to top it off they played three new songs from their upcoming album The Heart Is A Monster. The first of the new songs “Hot Traveler” was the first song of the set, and it really got things going. The song itself seems like it picks up right where Fantastic Planet left off. Of the two other new songs “Mulholland Drive,” was a really sweet and pleasant song that evoked the sensibility of say “The Nurse Who Loved Me.” The other new song “Counterfeit Sky” was a classic Failure song that had all that you’ve come to love about the band. The crowd was really into the set as well. Seeing them in Ventura as opposed to Los Angeles, presented a different vibe that was seemingly in a more relaxed setting that allowed the band to be a bit more free in what they chose to play and how they interacted with the crowd.

Ken Andrews voice is pristine and really conveys the lyrics in such a way that it leaves chills up your spine (in a total good way). Greg Edwards ability to create the most simple guitar leads yet make them so intricate and vital is astonishing. Kellii Scott is one of the most underrated drummers I’ve ever heard. He plays with such passion and intensity.

The only bad part of the night was the opening band. First off there should have been no opening band. Just give Failure 2 hours to play and let them do what they do. This opening band called Hy Brazil, was terrible. These guys have no clue what they want their music to be. The only intriguing thing about them was that they had a harp player in the band. The singer was embarrassing, humping the microphone stand like he was Steven Tyler in the 80’s, and trying to sing like he had pipes. Enough about that band, they didn’t deserve the chance to open for Failure.

Failure delivered exactly what you would expect them to do and then some as always. Thank you Ken, Greg and Kellii for another great night of music and inspiration and on my birthday weekend is a major plus!

Failure Setlist:
1. Segue 4 (new segue)
2. Hot Traveler (new song)
3. Frogs
4. Another Space Song
5. Counterfeit Sky (new song)
6. Saturday Savior
7. Segue 3
8. Dirty Blue Balloons
9. Pillowhead
10. Undone
11. Stuck On You
12. Macaque
13. Mulholland Drive (new song)
14. Heliotropic

Encore:
15. The Nurse Who Loved Me
16. Smoking Umbrellas
17. Daylight

By: Brian Lacy